Hi, I’m Brent.

In 2010, with only seven months of Salesforce Administration experience, I was hired by a multinational industrial manufacturing company to help deploy Salesforce to 1500 global users and manage Salesforce as the Company’s Salesforce Administrator. This job was a challenge and forced me to learn along the way. There’s nothing better than learning on the job!

Admin Hero started in 2012 as a way to document and share my own lessons learned and the best practices I discovered as I worked to manage a complex implementation. Admin Hero has grown into one of the most popular Salesforce blogs in the world and a trusted resource in the Salesforce community.

The goal of this site is to help Salesforce Administrators everywhere become workplace heroes. To do this, I cover a wide array of Salesforce and general business topics written in a way that’s easy to understand. Hopefully, you’ll even read some posts that challenge your perspectives.

In addition to running Admin Hero, I am a Salesforce Consultant with ShellBlack.com, LLC.

Here’s some additional information about me (if you’re still interested):

  • I live in Denver, Colorado with my wife and three sons.
  • I’m honored to be a Salesforce MVP.
  • Salesforce Certified Administrator, Advanced Administrator, Platform App Builder, Sales Cloud Consultant, and Service Cloud Consultant.
  • Dreamforce Presenter.
  • My initials spell “BAD.” Pretty cool, huh?

Thank you so much for swinging by to check out the site. Use the sign-up form below to receive Admin Hero posts in your inbox each week.

You can also connect with me on Twitter, FacebookEmail or on the Trailblazer Community! I would love to connect with you!

Here’s to you – the awesome Admin Heroes of the world!


Brent Downey Full Signature



  1. Simon

    August 10, 2012 at 10:44 pm

    Hey Brent, some great blogs…regarding your recent blog on driving adoption I’d be interested if you could look at our app and blog your thoughts for us please? Here’s a link to our new listing: http://goo.gl/7glfH thanks.


  2. Kevin

    December 20, 2014 at 10:55 am

    Hi Brent,

    Love your site, really looking forward to the Zero to Hero posts. I may be jumping the gun here but during this season it’s very slow at work and I want to start. But I’m on this phase, “so much content and so many workbooks – your mind is numb”. Perfectly said!

    I just finished the Force.com Fundamentals workbook and don’t know what to study next. I’ve done some Trailhead exercises (very useful). I’ve looked at the Force.com workbook. I’ve signed up for the Udacity Salesforce class. I can’t tell which is the next logical step and which overlap. Any advice? My short term goals are getting ready to be the admin for our new Salesforce instance in January and passing the ADM 201 and DEV 401.

    Thanks and happy holidays in the Denver snow!


    • Brent Downey

      December 20, 2014 at 3:03 pm

      Hi Kevin! If you have gone through the Force.com Fundamentals, I would suggest some “hands-on” experience. Think of something that you want to track with Salesforce and build it. For example, I have a Dev org where I have created a way of tracking the cost of my vehicles including maintenance and total vehicle cost. Think of something that you need or want to track and build it out! Good luck and thanks for reading!


  3. Kevin

    December 22, 2014 at 4:18 pm

    Hi again,

    I asked this same question over on the forums and you answered it there so consider it closed, thanks! It’s a great community – many places to get help.



  4. Alesia

    February 20, 2015 at 4:29 pm

    Hi Brent! I have just watched your 1000 Thanks video. Very exciting moment for your blog! I just wanted to tell you that I have been following you blog for a while now, and absolutely love it. But this year posts are absolutely amazing! Keep it up! (even though I have no idea how you do it, especially with a little one in your house 🙂 – he is adorable!) Good luck and looking forward to more great posts!


    • Brent Downey

      February 20, 2015 at 10:24 pm

      Well thanks Alesa! I appreciate that! Sometimes, I don’t know how I do it either sometimes but knowing that folks like you are finding value is the big reason I do it! Thanks for reading!


  5. Chad

    August 13, 2015 at 9:14 am

    Hi Brent,

    I hope i haven’t asked this already and if i have, please forgive me. in your opinion, do you think the study material for dev401 would be consistent or be equivalent for the adm201 too? i passed the dev401 some time ago and i still have the study material. my goal was to complete the admin trailhead and review my dev401 material but wasn’t sure if that’s enough.

    any thoughts?




    • Brent Downey

      August 13, 2015 at 12:37 pm

      Hi Chad! The DEV401 certification focuses on how to build on the force.com platform whereas the ADM201 focuses on the functionality of the application. The Admin certs focus a lot on the limits and nuances of specific aspects of the tool vs how to build on the platform. I would actually say that the Admin certifications would better prepare you for the Developer certification.


  6. sachin goel

    October 11, 2015 at 1:46 pm

    sir i’m in m tech and my dissertation topic is security in cloud computing . I want to implement enhanced blowfish algorithm(or any other algo) for encryption .
    For this i want to create a VF page which has algo code written in apex .
    through this page i want save the details (say merchandise object in warehouse app) of object in encrypted form on detailed page .

    it means i enter plain text on vf page and it shows cipher text on detailed page.

    and also i want the vf page for displaying this saved data in decrypted form(plain text).
    sir, is this possible in salesforce and if yes, what extra api or support i needed. please help me with this .


  7. Mike Pagani

    November 30, 2015 at 11:54 am

    Hi Brent,
    I’m starting on the road to SF Admin cert and your blog is heaven sent. A ground level perspective. I have started, owned, bought and sold my own small businesses for many years. Bored with retirement, I’m looking for a way to use my business experience to help other businesses grow and prosper. My first question is: Is Microsoft the best laptop platform to start with, or does it matter?
    Please keep up your great work.
    Mike Pagani
    Los Angeles, CA


    • Brent Downey

      November 30, 2015 at 4:38 pm

      Hi Mike! I would say, use what you are familiar with. If you prefer Windows of Mac, that will work just fine. Since Salesforce is based in the cloud, it doesn’t matter what operating system you use!


  8. soumia

    April 7, 2016 at 8:56 am

    Hi Bernt,

    Hope your doing good. Its a great blog to learn.

    I need your help in getting Salesforce Admin Freelancer work.I have 2yrs of experience in Salesforce, creating reports and dashboards and all Admin stuff . I want to work as a freelancer now. Can you please help on this.

    Really appreciate your help.

    Thanks in Advance.


  9. Rhett Broussard

    May 5, 2016 at 12:58 pm


    I would like to talk with you about some work I need done.


    • Brent Downey

      May 5, 2016 at 4:15 pm

      Hi Rhett! I don’t work on the side any longer now that I’m a full-time consultant. If you’re interested though you can check out http://www.shellblack.com to see if we would be a good fit!


  10. Sanjay

    June 7, 2016 at 7:16 am

    Hi Brent,

    I am around 45 years and have a good exposure to VB programming. I wish to know, if I can learn Sales Force now and try seeking work opportunities at this stage of my career.



  11. Gaurav

    October 26, 2016 at 1:52 am

    Hi Brent,

    I have been working on Infor LN as a Functional Administrator for over a year. I now have over 4 years working knowledge of supply-chain, retail experience to add to my bachelors in IT and Mba in marketing. I wanted to increase my knowledge in ERP domain. Would SalesForce be a good addition or should I stick with Infor LN?
    Will it help my job prospects if I get certified in SalesForce, considering I might not get hands on work experience in SalesForce.

    Thanks in Advance.



  12. shaikh saifur

    November 22, 2016 at 4:09 am

    is there any app similar to config workbook


  13. priya

    November 23, 2016 at 8:16 pm


    I have a question when I reading knowledge articles I read one that is related to data loader

    I would like to import emails into my Case records on the “Emails” section from Activity ( 000175914) that is article number


    I have question regarding this why do we need to import emails and attach this to cases “Email” related list when we raise a case through Email-to-Case emails will get attached to this related list without doing anything.

    Please clarify why we will get this type of scenarios.

    Thank you,


  14. Paolo

    January 23, 2017 at 1:49 pm

    Hey Brent, great blog!

    Do you offer advertising on your website? Please feel free to email me.



  15. Dharmie

    September 26, 2017 at 3:07 am

    Hi, Brent,
    I came across your website yesterday when I was searching for Sample projects for an Admin, to increase my knowledge of Salesforce. I am currently a business analyst and a newly certified Salesforce Admin. Please can you help with the following

    – How can I become a Salesforce admin hero
    – Do you know where I can get Sample project for admin that I can practice with


  16. Mira

    October 31, 2017 at 9:54 pm

    Hi, Brent,

    I came across your website yesterday when I was searching for Salesforce admin projects, to increase my knowledge of Salesforce. I am currently a Salesforce administrator and business analyst. I have implemented and customized salesforce myself without any formal training.

    Please can you help with the following

    How can I become a Salesforce admin hero?
    How does it useful if I share my story?
    What is my career benefits?

    Thank you


    • Brent Downey

      November 1, 2017 at 10:45 am

      Hi Mira! Good for you in self learning and implementing! Being an Admin Hero is more than just having knowledge of Salesforce; it’s how you engage users, drive business process, and solve problems. There are Admins out there that just take orders and don’t think critically about the impacts or long term. This isn’t the behavior of an Admin Hero. Salesforce jobs are hot right now (at least in the US) so the pickings are good if you’ve got the skillset. Great pay and benefits (depending on the company of course) in the Salesforce ecosystem.


  17. Ori Pinhasi

    November 19, 2017 at 5:54 am

    Dear Brent,

    As leader in the salesforce Community Can I share with you some innovative approach form using salesforce and get your feedback ?

    Looking forward to hearing back from you.

    Best Regards,



  18. Angie

    February 9, 2018 at 6:40 am

    Hi Brent,
    I am very fascinated with your struggling , hardworking and energetic story…..I am a new learner i have just 1 year of experience in Admin, but for me it is very tough to find a job without certification.
    You are a Role model for me and I am your follower. =)
    What do you suggest me?



    • Brent Downey

      February 21, 2018 at 11:10 am

      Thanks, Angie! I hope that you find Admin Hero very informative and motivating! Good luck on your career journey.


  19. Ron George

    April 19, 2018 at 7:50 am

    I’m looking for advice on the training path I should take with Saleforce.

    I’ve recently been added, to volunteer staff, of a non-profit organization. They’ve bee using Salesforce, on a limited basis, but are looking to me to further develop their platform.

    I do not have Salesforce experience, but I have developed/managed databases in the past. Trained users and served as network administrator.

    I’d like to not only learn Salesforce, but obtain Admin Cert as soon as possible.

    Any advice? It will be appreciated.


    • Brent Downey

      May 1, 2018 at 12:05 pm

      Consume as much information as you can – blogs, podcasts, videos, and Trailhead. Get some of that hands-on experience (which is going to be critical for the Admin Cert). You can also look at some of the free resources in the Trailblazer Community; there is a free certification group there that helps you prep for the exams. Good luck!


  20. phil maman

    May 15, 2018 at 7:06 pm

    Can you address the issue of paying taxes as a consultant vs. W2 and how to set it up right?


    • Brent Downey

      May 22, 2018 at 8:51 pm

      I would speak with an accountant or CPA so that you get accurate, professional advice, but I would use a tool like Quickbooks to track your expenses and income. They will help you pay quarterly taxes and ensure that your taxes are done right. Good luck!


  21. Fritz

    July 2, 2018 at 4:23 am

    I signed up for the zero to Hero but I haven’t received anything yet?


    • Brent Downey

      July 2, 2018 at 11:54 am

      Hey Fritz! Zero to Hero isn’t delivered by email. Navigate to the Zero to Hero page, and all of the blog posts are listed there in the Table of Contents!


  22. Kristan

    July 18, 2018 at 4:45 pm

    Hi Brent!

    Thanks for all the information on your blog! I did have a question about becoming a Certified Administrator.
    I have seen some off-Salesforce courses offered for a discounted rate. Would you recommend taking a course through Salesforce or do you have trust placed in some off-Salesforce such as SimpliLearn.com?

    I want to make sure I get a quality learning experience, but for a good price.



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